Environment

WSDOT Environmental Manager Rob Woeck stands next to an Edgecomb Creek outlet that runs underneath the Burlington Northern railroad on Monday, Dec. 3, 2018 in Arlington, Wa. This overgrown outlet is the only way for spawning salmon to get to the revitalized spawning grounds of Edgecomb Creek. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

House passes cap-and-trade with a link for a gas tax hike

As wrangling over climate change policy continues, a major transportation package is pronounced dead.

WSDOT Environmental Manager Rob Woeck stands next to an Edgecomb Creek outlet that runs underneath the Burlington Northern railroad on Monday, Dec. 3, 2018 in Arlington, Wa. This overgrown outlet is the only way for spawning salmon to get to the revitalized spawning grounds of Edgecomb Creek. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
The Lenz composting facility borders. (Google Earth)

Odors are a concern if Stanwood composting operation expands

Air regulators drew up a draft permit that would allow Lenz Enterprises to double in size. Residents can weigh in.

The Lenz composting facility borders. (Google Earth)
Signs from the Department of Ecology warning about contamination in the creek that runs through Powder Mill Gulch on Wednesday, March 31, 2021 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

State order targets Boeing Everett plant’s polluted history

Records show a dispute over cleanup requirements for chemically tainted water. The company denies there’s a disagreement.

Signs from the Department of Ecology warning about contamination in the creek that runs through Powder Mill Gulch on Wednesday, March 31, 2021 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Coho salmon fry from the Stillaguamish Tribe Salmon Hatchery at Harvey Creek on Friday, March 26, 2021 in Arlington, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

A tall task: Finding common ground in region’s floodplains

Tribes, farmers, cities and other groups make some headway in the Stillaguamish River Basin.

Coho salmon fry from the Stillaguamish Tribe Salmon Hatchery at Harvey Creek on Friday, March 26, 2021 in Arlington, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
The Valley View neighborhood of Everett abuts the Wood Creek drainage, which city officials are proposing to sell for possible partial development. (Chuck Taylor / The Herald) 20200528

Everett, environmental group to study Wood Creek future uses

The 92.5-acre property near Valley View had been proposed as surplus before neighbors rallied.

The Valley View neighborhood of Everett abuts the Wood Creek drainage, which city officials are proposing to sell for possible partial development. (Chuck Taylor / The Herald) 20200528
Absorbents placed to contain oil in the stormwater pond outside Achilles USA, July 2018. (Washington State Department of Ecology)

Everett manufacturer settles oil spill fines for $222,000

Six geese, a snake and blue herons were covered in oil at a retention pond outside Achilles USA.

Absorbents placed to contain oil in the stormwater pond outside Achilles USA, July 2018. (Washington State Department of Ecology)
Tom Campbell, who as a legislative staffer, helped write the original 1990 Growth Management Act, stands in the  eco-friendly subdivision called Clearwater Commons on Tuesday, March 9, 2021 in Bothell, Washington. House Bill 1099, which would update Washingtonճ Growth Management Act, moves to the Senate after House approval. Campbell wants Snohomish County to move ahead with climate-friendly regulations, in parallel if not ahead of updated state law. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

Bill would add climate-change factors to state planning law

Backers say HB 1099 would limit sprawl and cut greenhouse gases. Critics fear it would hurt housing options.

Tom Campbell, who as a legislative staffer, helped write the original 1990 Growth Management Act, stands in the  eco-friendly subdivision called Clearwater Commons on Tuesday, March 9, 2021 in Bothell, Washington. House Bill 1099, which would update Washingtonճ Growth Management Act, moves to the Senate after House approval. Campbell wants Snohomish County to move ahead with climate-friendly regulations, in parallel if not ahead of updated state law. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Farmer Frog volunteer Amy Drackert helps load potatoes into cars on Friday, March 5, 2021 in Woodinville, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

County wants non-profit food distributor to find a new home

Farmer Frog is operating on unleased land and could cause environmental harm, the county alleges.

Farmer Frog volunteer Amy Drackert helps load potatoes into cars on Friday, March 5, 2021 in Woodinville, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Mark Mulligan / The Herald
Sunset Falls cascades down past the existing fish ladder along the Skykomish River east of Index, February 4, 2014.
Photo taken 20140214

New hatchery on Skykomish to end practice of importing fish

A plan to capture fish from Sunset Falls near Index and release them in the river is open for public comment.

Mark Mulligan / The Herald
Sunset Falls cascades down past the existing fish ladder along the Skykomish River east of Index, February 4, 2014.
Photo taken 20140214
A barge worker hauls in an oil boom before heading off with the remains of the Mukilteo Ferry Dock ramp and pier on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021 in Mukilteo, Washington. With the new dock in operation, all that is left is to tear down the old ticket building. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

Old Mukilteo ferry dock afloat on the barge of ‘Lincoln Logs’

The haul included 213 wood pilings, 15 concrete pilings, 47 steel pilings and a “Speed Limit 15” sign.

A barge worker hauls in an oil boom before heading off with the remains of the Mukilteo Ferry Dock ramp and pier on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021 in Mukilteo, Washington. With the new dock in operation, all that is left is to tear down the old ticket building. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Go East Corp. Landfill next The Point subdivision in Silver Lake on Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

From landfill to houses — after 11-year battle with neighbors

Nearly 100 houses will be built around a former construction-waste landfill east of Silver Lake.

Go East Corp. Landfill next The Point subdivision in Silver Lake on Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Dirt is moved during the deconstruction of a seawall on Friday, Jan. 29, 2020 in Langley, Wa. Shoreline restoration underway north of Langley involves removal of an old barge and bulkheads. Sea level rise makes such habitat improvements all the more important to endangered salmon and their prey. The project is a partnership between Seahorse Siesta property owners and the Northwest Straits Foundation. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Small fish, big barriers: A county confronts climate change

Island County has 196 miles of shoreline to protect as sea levels rise. And erosion is only one of the challenges.

Dirt is moved during the deconstruction of a seawall on Friday, Jan. 29, 2020 in Langley, Wa. Shoreline restoration underway north of Langley involves removal of an old barge and bulkheads. Sea level rise makes such habitat improvements all the more important to endangered salmon and their prey. The project is a partnership between Seahorse Siesta property owners and the Northwest Straits Foundation. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Marianne Edain, seen with her dog Takilna, is a longtime activist and, with her husband Steve Erickson, founded the Whidbey Environmental Action Network (WEAN). They are restoration ecologists by trade. Shot at home on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021 in Clinton, Washington. Edain, 73, has been fighting local environmental battles since 1977. “Back then, we thought (about climate change) in terms of generations,” she said. “Ten to 15 years ago, we were thinking in terms of decades. Now it’s in our face.”
 (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

Climate change fears motivate scientist, longtime activist

They are well into their 70s and are speaking up for environmental protection in Island County.

Marianne Edain, seen with her dog Takilna, is a longtime activist and, with her husband Steve Erickson, founded the Whidbey Environmental Action Network (WEAN). They are restoration ecologists by trade. Shot at home on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021 in Clinton, Washington. Edain, 73, has been fighting local environmental battles since 1977. “Back then, we thought (about climate change) in terms of generations,” she said. “Ten to 15 years ago, we were thinking in terms of decades. Now it’s in our face.”
 (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Morgan Zehrung, owner of Forecast Solar, takes measurements for solar panel on the home of Brian Aikins Friday morning in Everett on January 29, 2021. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Pandemic slows growth of the clean-tech sector — for now

With economic uncertainty, homeowners and businesses have put the brakes on alternative energy plans.

Morgan Zehrung, owner of Forecast Solar, takes measurements for solar panel on the home of Brian Aikins Friday morning in Everett on January 29, 2021. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
A man walks past a parking lot roof made up of solar panels at Hopeworks Station on Monday, Aug. 31, 2020 in Everett, Washington. HopeWorks Station has been awarded a Platinum LEED certificate for its environmentally-friendly design and features.  (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

A green Everett architecture firm teams up with Housing Hope

Dykeman Architects has designed sustainable buildings for more than a quarter-century.

A man walks past a parking lot roof made up of solar panels at Hopeworks Station on Monday, Aug. 31, 2020 in Everett, Washington. HopeWorks Station has been awarded a Platinum LEED certificate for its environmentally-friendly design and features.  (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

Opponents appeal gravel mine expansion near Anacortes

The permit allows Lake Erie Gravel Pit to expand its operations from 17.7 acres to 53.5 acres.

The PAWS bald eagle is circled by a crow while he sits on a tree limb after being released at the Harbour Point Golf Club on Thursday, Jan. 28, 2020 in Mukilteo, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

After 2 weeks of rehab, an eagle flies down the golf fairway

It’s a regular occurrence: A rescued bird was released back into the wild after convalescing.

The PAWS bald eagle is circled by a crow while he sits on a tree limb after being released at the Harbour Point Golf Club on Thursday, Jan. 28, 2020 in Mukilteo, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

New county office covers parks, tourism, water, energy, farms

Four departments will merge into one beginning in February. The largest focuses on county parks.

An access road leads into plot of land located in north Darrington that could potentially be used to build a 30-acre Wood Innovation Center, which will house CLT manufacturing and modular building companies on Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021 in Darrington, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Timber innovation center a chance to reinvigorate rural town

A center to produce innovative wood products could stabilize Darrington’s drained timber economy.

An access road leads into plot of land located in north Darrington that could potentially be used to build a 30-acre Wood Innovation Center, which will house CLT manufacturing and modular building companies on Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021 in Darrington, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
A large flock of ducks fly above the recently restored wetland area of Smith Island along Union Slough on Thursday, April 11, 2019 in Everett, Wash. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Hunting season, new trail access open on island near Everett

New parking on Smith Island is now available, along with an annual waterfowl hunting season.

A large flock of ducks fly above the recently restored wetland area of Smith Island along Union Slough on Thursday, April 11, 2019 in Everett, Wash. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
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